WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
APRIL 28, 2022
TOPIC: FLEE YOUTHFUL LUSTS AND LAZINESS
BY T. O. BANSO
“In all labor there is profit, but idle chatter leads only to poverty” (Proverbs 14:23 New King James Version).
One of the danger signs of a sorrowful future is when someone spends his youth in lust and so-called enjoyment, and lives off his parents, relations, and friends rather than engage in gainful work. Proverbs 7:6-9 talks about a youth devoid of understanding. He crossed the street near the house of an immoral woman or a harlot and strolled down the path by her house at twilight, as the day was fading and the dark of night set in.
Verses 21-23 tell us further what happened after this youth devoid of understanding and the immoral woman met. “With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him. Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, he did not know it would cost his life” (New King James Version).
Unfortunately, some youths, married and unmarried, are in this category – lustful and indolent. 1 John 2:17 says, “And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (New King James Version). The Bible warns in 2 Timothy 2:22 to flee youthful lusts but pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Lust is defined as a “Desire for what is forbidden; an obsessive sexual craving” (Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary). It is “sinful longing; the inward sin which leads to the falling away from God” (Easton’s Bible Dictionary).
Those who follow the path of an adulterous woman and live in youthful lust, cruising around in deceitful enjoyment would reap a sorrowful future. Their future would be full of regrets. “Now therefore, listen to me, my children;
Pay attention to the words of my mouth: Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, do not stray into her paths; for she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death” (Proverbs 7:24-27 New King James Version).
If you’re a youth and married, “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice with the wife of your youth. As a loving deer and a graceful doe, let her breasts satisfy you at all times; and always be enraptured with her love. For why should you, my son, be enraptured by an immoral woman, and be embraced in the arms of a seductress?” (Proverbs 5:18-20 New King James Version). Both youths and older people who are involved in sexual immorality should repent today before it is too late. Jesus will deliver them if they will come to Him.
There are also lazy youths who waste their lives in unproductive ventures. Some of them think they don’t have to go to school, acquire marketable skills, and use their brains and hands in diligent work because their parents are wealthy or their relations are there for them to get whatever they need.
They do not appreciate the fact that their parents won’t always be alive or remain wealthy, and there is a limit to which their well-to-do relations and friends can continue to sponsor their lives. “Will you set your eyes on that which is not For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away like an eagle toward heaven” (Proverbs 23:5 New King James Version). Proverbs 27:24 riches are not forever; neither does a crown endure to all generations.
Even if their parents succeed in bequeathing to them their enormous wealth, their laziness and irresponsibility will make them squander everything and they will live in penury till they die. Ecclesiastes 2:18-19 talks about the possibility of a foolish inheritor. It says, “Then I hated all my labor in which I had toiled under the sun, because I must leave it to the man who will come after me. And who knows whether he will be wise or a fool? Yet he will rule over all my labor in which I toiled and in which I have shown myself wise under the sun. This also is vanity” (New King James Version).
Unless they repent, there is no great future for those who depend on the wealth of their parents, relations, and friends and will not engage in diligent work. There is no amount of money they are given that will change their fortune for the better. They will live in want and die in misery unless they repent. Examples abound of children of wealthy people who have wasted the wealth bequeathed to them by their parents and are not living in penury. They deceived themselves by believing that the wealth they did not invest but squandered would increase!
God is a worker. He created man to work. He put Adam in the garden to tend and keep it (Genesis 2:15). Anyone who will not work in his youth but will choose to live in sinful pleasures and lusts, laziness, and recklessness will end in poverty no matter the generational wealth he may be enjoying now. He may start generational poverty in his life.
There is another group of youths who waste their time in get-rich-quick schemes engaging in fraudulent activities, including cybercrime. Others engage in occult rites to acquire wealth instead of engaging in legitimate work. Such youths destroy themselves and the only thing that would come out of it eventually, even if they seem to have satisfied their desire, is sorrow. They will experience a life of sorrow and regret. Proverbs 28:20 says, “A faithful man will abound with blessings, but he who hastens to be rich will not go unpunished” (New King James Version). Verse 22 says, “A man with an evil eye hastens after riches, and does not consider that poverty will come upon him” (New King James Version).
The New Living Translation renders Proverbs 28:20 thus: “The trustworthy person will get a rich reward, but a person who wants quick riches will get into trouble.” Indeed, many youths who have done thus are in trouble today. Verse 22 of the same chapter says thus in the new Living Translation: “Greedy people try to get rich quick but don’t realize they’re headed for poverty.”
Hear God’s advice to such youths: “Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain, overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest. How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep — so shall your poverty come on you like a prowler, and your need like an armed man” (Proverbs 6:6-11 New King James Version). Did you see that?
The Bible also says, “The soul of a lazy man desires, and has nothing; but the soul of the diligent shall be made rich” (Proverbs 13:4 New King James Version). And according to Proverbs 14:23, “In all labor there is profit, but idle chatter leads only to poverty” (New King James Version). The New Living Translation renders it thus: “Work brings profit, but mere talk leads to poverty!” A sorrowful future awaits the indolent.
Youths who are given to lust and laziness should repent while there is still time. The Bible says remember now your Creator in the days of your youth before the difficult days come (Ecclesiastes 12:1). Nobody can be a youth forever and some things are better done in one’s youth. Youthful lusts and laziness will only lead to sorrow. Don’t be a young man (or woman) devoid of understanding. Come to Jesus and you will receive help to overcome youthful lusts. You will also learn how to stop chasing fantasies and work.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner, and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself. I believe Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and was raised on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, I pray that youths who are guilty of lust and laziness will repent and surrender their lives to you. Deliver them from lust and laziness. Let them remember You in the days of their youth and serve You all the days of their lives.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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